Barbara VanDenburgh Movie Reviews & Previews - Rotten Tomatoes

Barbara VanDenburgh

Barbara VanDenburgh
Tomatometer-approved critic

Movie Reviews Only

Rating T-Meter Title | Year Review
2.5/5 72% Instant Family (2018) Too well-meaning and sincere to truly dislike, but too frictionless and manufactured to do right by the complicated scenario.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Nov 14, 2018
3/5 88% Green Book (2018) It would be more insulting if Ali and Mortensen weren't milking the formula for all it's worth, gifting the film unearned grace with their magnetism.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Nov 14, 2018
4/5 88% What They Had (2018) "What They Had"... achieves a delicate balance of tone, finding the humor in the irrepressibly sad, the love in daily toil, the soul in a disease that seeks to obliterate it.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Oct 23, 2018
2.5/5 71% Galveston (2018) Despite its ostensive seriousness, "Galveston" is a tepid crime drama without talons sharp enough to sink into the audience.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Oct 15, 2018
4.5/5 88% First Man (2018) A sweeping biographical drama of Armstrong's decade-long march to the moon, test by grueling test, told without romance from the pilot's-eye view.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Oct 8, 2018
3/5 52% Papillon (2018) Hunnam and Malek acquit themselves finely, neither trying to imitate his predecessor.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Aug 21, 2018
2/5 49% The Spy Who Dumped Me (2018) It's criminal to cast this many talented people - Gillian Anderson! Fred Melamed! Jane Curtin! Paul Reiser! - and not write them any jokes that don't rely on shock gags, toilet humor and cliché social observations.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Jul 27, 2018
4/5 51% Equalizer 2 (2018) Betrayal, loss, grief, redemption - it's the stuff great characters are built on. And it makes all those thrilling knife fights and broken bones actually mean something.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Jul 19, 2018
2.5/5 58% Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation (2018) Perhaps a vacation would serve this tired franchise well.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Jul 13, 2018
2/5 33% The Catcher Was A Spy (2018) "The Catcher Was a Spy" only ever penetrates the surface - of Berg's psyche, of heroism in the face of evil, of America's pastime - so that historical events ostensibly thrilling are rendered rote.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Jun 21, 2018
4/5 100% Summer 1993 (Estiu 1993) (2018) It's a film entirely lacking in pomp, but there's a certain bravado in its delicate reservation. A tender and spare meditation on family unfurls in the stillness of a sleepy, sun-soaked Spanish summer.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Jun 14, 2018
3.5/5 91% Hearts Beat Loud (2018) You've heard this song before and can predict all the emotional high notes before they hit, but sometimes that's all you need from a summer bop.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Jun 14, 2018
2/5 40% Mary Shelley (2018) To make boring the revelries of 19th century literati is no mean feat, but it is "Mary Shelley's" chief accomplishment.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Jun 7, 2018
4/5 94% Beast (2018) The dark nail-biter eschews the obvious at every turn and is less a whodunit than a twisted moral meditation grounded by its mesmerizing leading lady.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted May 17, 2018
1/5 17% Show Dogs (2018) When you find yourself longing for "Turner and Hooch," things are very bleak indeed.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted May 17, 2018
2.5/5 74% Little Pink House (2018) A workmanlike dramatization of a controversial Supreme Court decision that never quite makes a case for itself.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted May 10, 2018
3/5 75% The House of Tomorrow (2018) The pedestrian narrative still makes for a winsome coming-of-age tale, buoyed as it is by a talented cast and visually striking setting.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Apr 26, 2018
3/5 88% Love After Love (2018) It's a film intentionally adrift, rambling between a loose succession of family gatherings and dinner parties with subdued style, the camera feeling like just another person at the edge of the room.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Apr 19, 2018
3.5/5 82% Where Is Kyra? (2018) Gosh, but it's good to have Michelle Pfeiffer back.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Apr 12, 2018
2.5/5 81% Beirut (2018) 'Beirut' should have the grace to tell a story at least as good as the native one it eschewed, but instead we're plunged into a murky geopolitical morass peopled with paper-thin characters with little emotional resonance.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Apr 11, 2018
3.5/5 95% Foxtrot (2018) "Foxtrot" is far too interior to be called flashy, but there's something striking in director Samuel Maoz's visual confidence, the way he translates his characters' states of mind into images.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Apr 5, 2018
1.5/5 21% Midnight Sun (2018) Schwarzenegger's chief skills are leaning against things, looking confused and having good hair, while Thorne struggles to convincingly lip sync.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Mar 23, 2018
2/5 51% Flower (2018) It feels like the work of indie filmmakers weaned on Todd Solondz movies, adopting all of the ugliness but none of the insight, without even shock value to show for it.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Mar 22, 2018
4/5 94% A Fantastic Woman (Una mujer fantástica) (2018) "A Fantastic Woman" is a superb Chilean drama, at times infuriating but never despairing.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Feb 22, 2018
2/5 64% Peter Rabbit (2018) For anyone familiar with the original "Peter Rabbit," it's a little depressing to see its storybook charm reduced to slapstick.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Feb 8, 2018
2.5/5 51% Freak Show (2018) It's a Frankenstein's monster of teen comedies, lumbering from one cliché to the next on its way to an inevitable conclusion.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Jan 25, 2018
3/5 70% Happy End (2017) Haneke's technique is almost provocation, and it proves a fascinating intellectual exercise. But while you can admire the construction, you can't live in it.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Jan 18, 2018
1.5/5 0% Acts of Violence (2018) The title "Acts of Violence" has less to do with the storyline of the movie it graces and more about what's perpetrated against the audience watching it.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Jan 11, 2018
4/5 100% Paddington 2 (2018) There are slapstick hijinks and silly scenarios aplenty, but at its heart "Paddington 2" has something serious to say about making the world a better place through daily acts of kindness.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Jan 11, 2018
1/5 30% Wonder Wheel (2017) The dialogue is agony. Winslet is given some especial doozies to deliver with a straight face.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Dec 7, 2017
3.5/5 93% Thelma (2017) "Thelma" treads the line between the psychological and supernatural, gracefully at first, and then with increasing abandon.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Dec 7, 2017
3.5/5 95% The Breadwinner (2017) The animation is expressive, as lush and detailed as tapestry. Harsh landscapes shimmer with beauty, even when littered with the bones of landmines and abandoned tanks.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Nov 30, 2017
3.5/5 86% My Friend Dahmer (2017) A morbidly fascinating peek behind the blood-stained curtains.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Nov 9, 2017
2.5/5 30% A Bad Moms Christmas (2017) IIt's kind of funny the first time a cute kid drops an F-bomb out of the blue; the fourth time, less so.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Nov 1, 2017
1.5/5 8% The Snowman (2017) "The Snowman" is like if aliens studied humanity and tried to make their own movie in an attempt to communicate with us.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Oct 19, 2017
3.5/5 63% Goodbye Christopher Robin (2017) "Goodbye Christopher Robin" is an emotionally layered story about failures in parenting that gave rise to one of our most enduring joys.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Oct 12, 2017
3.5/5 48% My Little Pony: The Movie (2017) It's always nice when a kid's film aims higher than the bare necessities, especially when it's a beloved property that doesn't have to.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Oct 5, 2017
2/5 24% Woodshock (2017) There's daring in the film's slow unfurling. The problem, though, isn't one of patience but of payoff. "Woodshock" is beautiful but it's all chassis, a root-dead tree that crumbles beneath the ax.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Sep 28, 2017
2/5 28% Rebel in the Rye (2017) A collective of narrative and stylistic cliches, "Rebel in the Rye" is lousy with hagiography, stripping Salinger of any danger, allure or mystery, and making him instead just another insufferable poet-philosopher in your MFA class.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Sep 14, 2017
2.5/5 76% Crown Heights (2017) "Crown Heights" is soul-shaking only in the abstract. In execution, it's deathly dull.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Sep 7, 2017
2/5 40% Leap! (2017) Cliches, cheap laughs, narrative short cuts and budget animation undermine an otherwise sweet tale of self-empowerment that should have stuck the landing.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Aug 24, 2017
2/5 41% The Hitman's Bodyguard (2017) Aside from a handful of chuckles and high-octane action sequences, "The Hitman's Bodyguard" is an ugly film lacking a moral center.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Aug 18, 2017
3.5/5 96% A Taxi Driver (2017) While a bit ponderous and overlong, it is a heartfelt appreciation of ordinary people turned heroes in extraordinary circumstances.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Aug 11, 2017
3.5/5 50% The Glass Castle (2017) It's mature enough to grasp that family is complex, and the existence of abuse and neglect does not negate the existence of love.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Aug 10, 2017
4/5 98% City of Ghosts (2017) "City of Ghosts" isn't merely about the personal sacrifices of these men, but a testament to the necessity of a free and open press the world over.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Jul 27, 2017
3/5 78% Atomic Blonde (2017) You don't cast Charlize Theron to lay waste to scores of German and Russian operatives in a Cold War-era spy thriller unless you intend to have her do it in style.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Jul 27, 2017
4/5 89% Lady Macbeth (2017) Shot with unsparing coldness, "Lady Macbeth" is a disturbing character study and dark moral meditation. And like the blood on its namesake's hands, it's not easily washed out.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Jul 20, 2017
2.5/5 48% Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets (2017) At its best, it hits the gut with the free-fall feel of a theme-park ride. But it's a long and winding path back to the gate, and "Valerian" loses its way many times, however beautifully.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Jul 20, 2017
3.5/5 79% The Little Hours (2017) This foul-mouthed medieval romp is occasionally hilarious and frequently improper - though a little more scripting and a little less romping would have served it well.‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Jul 6, 2017
1/5 0% Ripped (2017) Can we collectively agree to put a moratorium on the stoner comedy? Or at least hand out a limited number of vouchers to filmmakers per decade?‐ Arizona Republic
Read More | Posted Jun 29, 2017